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everyone some good here. >> that's right. on friday when president obama spoke to the nation before he left to come to hawaii he urged members of congress to take these days off during the holidays, to cool off and to gain some perspective. here's more of what president obama had to say. take a listen. >> so, as we leave town for a few days to be with our families for the holidays i hope it gives everybody some perspective. everybody can cool off. everybody can drink some eggnog, have some christmas cookies and sing some christmas carols, enjoy the company of loved ones. >> now the president also conceded that given the time crunch, there's probably not enough time to get a large deal done. so he really urged lawmakers to work together to at least get a deal that would prevent middle class americans and that lays the groundwork for deficit reduction and the president saying he remains hopeful that something can get done before the all-important january 1st deadline and i am told by sources at the white house that this will be a working vacation for the president. >> working in terms of what
. welcome to this special edition of "m schsnb"msnbc." as for president obama and john boehner, they are miles apart. neither are them talking about the deal the country really needs. kristin, we were talking yesterday that there's a possibility the president was considering coming back early perhaps thshould they strike a deal of some sort. >> i think it's likely president obama will cut his vacation short. we haven't gotten guidance about when that is going to happen. the white house is calling this a working vacation, but the reality is that talks are largely deadlocked over the fiscal cliff. there have been a few conversations going on at the staff level but really the expectation is that the hard work is going to get done when lawmakers return to washington after the christmas holiday, a little bit later on this week. that's when they're going to resume negotiations in earnest. of course there had been hopes that the president and house speaker john boehner were going to get a deal done. if you looked at the beginning of last week, they were getting close to a deal it appe
. >> are these red line warnings talk? >> cnn projects that barack obama will be re-elected president of the united states. >>> terror at an elementary school in connecticut. >> 20 children dead, six adults are also dead. >> so our hearts are broken today. for the parents and grandparents, sisters and brothers of these little children. may god bless the memory of the victims. >> thanks so much for starting your morning with us. we've got much more ahead on cnn's saturday morning which starts right now. >>> good morning, everyone. i'm randi kaye. it is 7:00 on the east coast, 4:00 a.m. out west, thanks for starting your day with us. victor blackwell is on assignment. >>> we start with the big countdown, ten days left for the white house and congress to reach an agreement on the fiscal cliff where millions of americans will be paying the price in their paychecks. but congress is now on holiday recess. and president obama is in hawaii. let's go straight to cnn's emily schmidt in washington. good morning. so before he left the capitoal, he laid out this three-point plan to washington. >> before he left
. >>> the physicianel california divten days away. president obama and house speaker john boehner thousands of miles away from each other. both men left washington for the holidays. president obama and family are in his native hawaii for a short christmas break. we'll have a live report from hawaii and the latest on the fiscal cliff talks a few minutes as well. >>> it's official. bp oil company will pay up to the tune of $7.8 billion. that is a class action settlement amount they agreed to pay, about 100,000 businesses and individuals hurt by the biggest oil spill in american history. a federal judge formized the settlement yesterday. a lot of gulf coast residents opted out of the class action suit and are pursuing lawsuits on their own. >>> in egypt today, more effects of a brand-new government's growing pains. the vice president is out. he is stepping down there. this man, mahmud mechanicy announced political life does not agree with him, and he'll go back to being a judge. it's the same day the egyptian people are voting for a second straight weekend on proposed changes to the country new islamis
on the edge of a fiscal cliff after a breakdown in talks on reaching a deal. president obama and lawmakers have left town taking a few days off for their christmas health. then it's back to the drawing bord and with budgeted talks in disarray, president obama and speaker john boehner are searching for a way to avoid tumbling over. >> we move forward together or we don't move forward at all. so, as we leave town for a few days to be with our families through the holidays. i hope it gives some perspective. >> we propose plans that democrats used to support but now they won't. i don't want taxes to go up. republicans don't want taxes to go up. but we only run the house, democrats continue to run washington. >> gregg: national correspondent steve centanni joins us live from washington. >> reporter: d.c. may be some shutting down for christmas but the clock hasn't stopped and fiscal cliff is closer than ever. no deal was reached this week to keep taxes from going up. joan boehner pulled plug on the plan "b" and he says it is now up to the president and g.o.p. is continuing to hammer away at pre
of a bronchitis related cough. he's now out of icu. >>> president obama says the u.s. has quote, very good leads on who is responsible for the deadly attack on the u.s. consulate in benghazi. the fbi repeatedly sent investigators to the scene. he could not elaborate. he vowed to follow recommendations from a review of the attack that killed four americans. >>> also in an interview, president obama discussed who he thinks is to blame for last minute negotiations ahead of the looming fiscal cliff. >> so far, at least, congress has not been able to get this stuff done. not because democrats in congress don't want to go ahead and cocooperate, i think it's bn hard for speaker boehner and leader mcconnell to accept the fact taxes on wealthiest americans should go up. we have put forward not only a sensible deal, but one that has the support of the majority of the american people, including close to half of republicans. >> let's get to the strategy talk. a pleasure to welcome these two gentlemen. joe sestak and former republican congressman and chairman tom davis, thank you both for being here. >> i wa
lindsay graham and president obama -- the state of our fragile economy. president obama made his final argument, placing the blame squarely on congress, specifically, house republicans, mr. obama is cautiously opt mifertic that lawmakers will reach a watered-down deal, but no mention of debt, tax reform or entitlements. i'm shannon bream. the senate will convene in an hour. we have team coverage on capitol hill and at the white house. we start with mike, live on capitol hill. what's the latest on republicans? and how are they reacting to the comments we heard from the president? >> reporter: good afternoon. the critical comments from president obama in a critical stage in these negotiations, certainly seem to hit a nerve. a spokesman for senator mitch mcconnell says while the president was tapingly those remark, senator mcconnell was trying to bring republicans and democrats together on a solution. the spokesman notes, discussions continue. if senator mcconnell and harry reid can reach a deal in the next couple of hours, leading senate republican notes there is no guarantee it will pas
even had a plan b or c. it should have been planned a. president obama went in, he is speaking, they need to listen and follow. he is a leader. plan b or c should not be happening. host: harry reid's spokesperson issued the statement last night. next is joe from iowa. caller: good morning. steve, hello. yes, i was just wondering, i think what it all boils down to -- was talking about this for a second. the republicans are the koch brothers' henchmen. there are looking out for themselves. that is what they cannot raise the money on the riches. the coke brothers -- koch brothers is the issue. caller: my first comment would be, how far do the left do you have to be to think that c-span is right wing? i own several assault weapons. the m-13 is a 10.08 and ted kennedy's car has killed more people that my gun. for any of these people who voted for obama read "drams of my father?" when you break it, you can fix it. these democrats think all you have to do is tax the rich, the rich have to make payroll, pay insurance -- the money has to come from somewhere. there will be laying people
, they're smoking joints. >>> i dare you, like double dare you. obama administration bites and says, yeah, we're prepared to go off the fiscal cliff. >>> roger goodell, the commissioner football fans love to hate. there's a softer, gentler side of goodell. seriously. the nfl commissioner you don't know. "newsroom" starts now. >>> good morning. thank you so much for joining me. i'm carol costello. smoke 'em if you got 'em. recreational marijuana is officially legal in washington state. shall we say a rather mellow celebration at seattle's space needle? pot smokers lit up like it was new year's eve. new voter approved initiative went into effect midnight. this pot party technically, is illegal. wz's law bans smoking pot in public places. for now the seattle police department is turning a blind eye. this notice was sent to all officers last night. until further notice officers shall not take any enforcement action, other than to issue a verbal warning, for a violation of initiative 502. miguel marquez is in seattle. you were there at midnight for the big party, when the law went into effect.
on a limb here and it will tell you where we are in tribal politics that when barack obama praised mccain and six, and need to see a republican senate immediately sent an e-mail to "politico" saying that kills the land. if he is for it, work instead. this is less about ideology now than tribalism. so that's the challenge we have and it's not encouraging moderates are providing space. it's intimidating them. getting into the question of every time i get people who live congress, look at republicans in the psyche been inside a tent we are breathing a gas and suddenly you're outside and say how could i have done not? how could i have acted that way? whenever ideas is to create a shadow congress that consists of former members who span the spectrum, to start a common set of facts and have them debate not in the way congress used to because congress is never a great debating society, the genuine debates and discussions that are going to have huge audiences but can provide a model for how voters who yearn to have a discussion about options are. you conservative notion that there is somethin
saying it is up to the democrats to do something. we'll not do anything until president obama and the democrats come up with a plan and president obama actually late yesterday did call all four leaders, majority, minority leaders in the house and senate that includes mitch mcconnell and said the first time a democrat called him since thanksgiving to talk about this. so they're talking but there is no indication anybody is actually doing anything right now. gregg: what about harry reid? what's his, does he have anything at all maybe towards the end of the week he will put on the table? i've been hearing he will put to a vote an extension of the bush tax cuts for anybody making under $250,000 a year, extend unemployment benefits for some 2 million people that are about to lose them. what are you hearing? >> right. he sounded pretty pessimistic this morning but that could change and there's, kind of a fight, procedurally between the house and the senate in a sense that if reid originates a bill in the senate that would do what you said, people in the house say, well that would be
everyone under a million dollars keep their tax rates low. president obama says this defies lodger, that people making $800,000, $900,000 should be paying higher taxes. republicans think they can get it through the house. no luck of getting it through the democratic senate at all. second vote which is to sweeten the deal for the republicans who are skeptical is to replace the automatic cuts, a lot of which would hit the defense department with cuts in other programs like the health law and food stamps. >> and tracie, who's coming out in favor of this plan "b"? >> well, among those in favor of it, off qusly john boehner, the house speaker and also paul ryan, the chair of the budget committee and former vice presidential candidate. there have been a lot of questions about whether or not he would come out behind this plan. but he's said that it seems to meet all of the goals that republicans have. there's been white a split within the republican party about just how much of a tax increase, if any, should be accepted. ry ryan's behind it. >> tracie potts in washington. helping us keep
, john if you come back with the deal, that you fashioned with obama this doesn't get more than say 100 votes or so and the republicans, cancer has cantor has started a whispered campaign and you are going to be -- we saw it happen with speaker gingrich and it can happen here. boehner walked away from a deal shortly after that. >> i want to come to the interplay between the leadership on the republican side in in a second but i have to ask this based on what you said. i think you know the president gave what was initially an off the record interview to the "des moines register" editorial board, speaking although he did not get the endorsement of that paper in one of the things he said in the interview was he believed he could get a grand bargain struck on the debt ceiling if he were reelected on november 6. a son what you're saying they may not be possible if if the freshman and now sophomores and many members who come and don't eventually give a nether blessing to cut a deal. in her may feel in the same tough spot now that but he was last year. a ground part and based on what you say m
, welcome to "weekends with alex witt." what is happening out there. ten days and counting. president obama and house speaker boehner left washington without reaching a deal on the fiscal cliff. before heading to hawaii, president obama said he met individually with leaders of the house and senate, asking them to work toward a package that prevents a tax hike on middle class americans. >> this is something within our capacity to solve. it doesn't take that much work. we just have to do the right thing. so call me a hopeless optimist, but i still think we can get it done. >> earlier in the day, speaker boehner held a news conference. a vote on his so-called plan "b" was scrapped thursday night when it became clear it did not have enough support among house republicans to secure passage. >> a situation where because of the political divide in the country, because of the divide here in washington, trying to bridge these differences has been difficult. if it were easy, i'll guarantee you this would have been done decades before. >> joining me now, congressional reporter for "the washington post
of hot water for making nice with president obama in the wake of hurricane sandy. >> 2.8 million people without power. i've watched these extraordinary scenes over new jersey today, really quite unprecedented. i've never seen anything quite like it. have you ever seen anything like this in your lifetime? >> no, i haven't. you know, you see sights like the seaside heights board walk where the program "the jersey shore" is filmed, the boardwalk is gone. it is gone. music rides, roller coaster ride, in the ocean. it's incredible. homes destroyed. it's an awful thing. >> you've taken charge, as you've always done in these situations, in a very impressive way. people have been surprised you've been so outspokenly supportive and praiseworthy to the president. i'm not surprised knowing you but explain to me why you were happy to do that so close to an election when some might say politically that wasn't the best thing to do. >> this is much more important than any election, piers. this is the livelihood of the people in my state when the president does this evenings that deserve praise, i will
house republicans to avoid the so-called fiscal cliff. also president obama's getting ready to speak this hour about an urgent national security issue. u.s.-led efforts to try to track down and eliminate loose nuclear weapons. that's coming up. >>> also, frightening now revelations about an al qaeda plot for a three-part terror attack on the united states embassy in iman, jordan. i'll ask the country's foreign minister for details. he's standing by live. i'm wolf blitzer. you're in "the situation room." >>> we begin this afternoon with brand-new republican offers to try to save the $2.2 trillion and avoid the so-called fiscal cliff. the across-the-board spending cuts and sharp tax increases that hit in just 29 days. let's get straight to our senior congressional correspondent dana bash. she's watching what's going on. dana, the tax rates, first of all, let's get to a major sticking point right now. there's been a counterproposal from house republicans to the white house. you have details. >> reporter: that's right. let's start exactly where you just began on those tax rates because t
comprehensive report. >> jamie: thank you. >> eric: president obama hit the road on friday to try to sell his plan to the american people. but is that his -- is that what needed to make a deal? bring in max schlapp, political director under president bush. former democratic congressman from texas, martin frost. matt and martin, welcome sunday morning. good to see you. matt, let me start with you. what do they need, because they are not there now, to get to the point they need to make a deal? >> they have time to pull a deal together. the real concern here is that president obama is drawing lines in the sand. some of the lines might not be able to be crossed by the republicans. that gets people increasingly worried that an overall deal can't be reached. hard to imagine in the short-term before cliff by the end of the year, they can't do something to bridge this in to a conversation next year. but when president obama says things through tim geithner that he said about raising tax rate and spend additional money, which is crazy, it makes people more concerned that a big overall grand bargain ca
. the u.s. ambassador and three other americans died in the attack. the obama administration has been under fire for saying it was a spontaneous incident linked to a protest. intelligence officials later called it a terrorist attack. a lawmaker says there are indications several possible motivations. catherine is live on capitol hill. how are lawmakers reacting to the videos? >> a lawmaker telling fox after the brief that it was frustrating, it was tough to watch the videos because whether you call the consulate a diplomatic facility, or you call it something else, it is u.s. sovereign territory. when the terrorists or the mob gathered outside the consulate, some of them were armed, some not, there was no resistance. there was a small arms fire. they walked into the consulate grounds. lawmakers say the video show how some of them left with clothing or electronics and others torched the facility leading to the deaths from what we know of the united states ambassador. a was striking today is that a republican who is on the house of representatives intelligence committee telling fox ther
at a vigil tonight remembering the victims. president obama spoke about the hea heartbreak hours after the shooting on friday and again during his weekly address yesterday. now, of course, we have the names of all the victims in this shooting. there were 20 children, all of them were just 6 or 7 years old. there's been a fund set up to help the families of the victims. here's the address if you'd like to send a donation, the sandy hook school support fund, 39 main street in newtown, the zip code is 06470. >> meanwhile, investigators here in newtown are trying to piece it altogether. they found more information on the shooter, but still no motivate. we get more now from cnn national correspondent susan candiotti following the investigation. >> reporter: investigators are learning more each day that may explain what led 20-year-old aid dam lanza to launch a vicious attack on young children and adults at an elementary school. >> our investigators at the crime scene, the school, and secondarily at the secondary crime scene that we discussed where the female was located deceased did produce
debate. president obama and his family are vacationing in hawaii and congress is on holiday recess. both sides are holding out hope that they will be able to reach a deal. >> this is something within our capacity to solve. it does not take this much work. we just have to do the right thing. >> of course, hope springs eternal and i know we have it in us to come together and do the right thing. >> listen to that, and it seems like they are both positive and feel something can get done. while both sides are away, the away and president in hawaii, can they get something done? >> reporter: well, look, richard, this will be a working vacation for president obama and i can also tell you that staffers on both sides of pennsylvania avenue will be in talks over the next several days despite the fact that they are technically on vacation. will they be able to get manage done that is significant over the next several days? probably not. but of course, lawmakers will head back to d.c. after the christmas holiday and resume negotiations again, and i expect we will see president obama cut his vacation
, president obama formally announced the appointment of joe biden to form a new white house-led effort to reform the gun control policies. >> i have asked the vice president to lead an effort that includes members of my cabinet and outside organizations to come up with a set of car proposals no later than january , up with a congress that proposals delivered in january. this is not something where folks will be stepping the issue for six months and publishing a report that gets read and then pushed aside. this is a team that has a very specific task, to pull together real reforms right now. >> more on the newtown massacre and gun control and violence after the headlines. talks on averting the so-called fiscal cliff have hit a wall with both president obama and house speaker john boehner rejecting the other's latest proposals. at the white house, obama told reporters he thinks republicans continue to hold a personal grudge against him, opposing his plans "just for the heck of a." obama went on to promise a veto of the latest republican plan to begin taxing households making over 100 --
that president obama is conducting in pakistan, in yemen, in other places, with the "kill list," that the times called it, that he personally keeps and names the people he puts on the list-your thoughts? rep. john lewis: well, i think it's time for us to end, end the efforts in afghanistan. we cannot justify the killing of people that we don't see. about't know anything them, or very little. war is not the answer. war is obsolete. it cannot be used as a tool of our foreign policy. it's barbaric. someplace, somehow, people must come to that point and say, "i ain't gonna stay the war no more." amy goodman: have you talked to president obama about this? rep. john lewis: i have not had an opportunity. but i've spoken out on the floor of the house against the war in afghanistan, as i did against the war in iraq. amy goodman: you voted in-three days after september 11, 2001, to give president bush the authority to retaliate in a vote that was 420 to 1. you have described it was one of your toughest votes. talk about how you decided to do that. rep. john lewis: i was very disturbed about what happened
cash. plus in his last weeks in congress, dennis kucinich demanding president obama give up secrets about drone attacks. he joins me live. >> it's 30,000 square feet. >> so long, hollywood. america's got a new hot spot for movies in the deep south. >> good to be with you. -iment brooke baldwin. i want to begin with a cnn exclusive. this is tough to watch, but the pictures speak volumes about what the syrian civil war is doing to its own people. this is about this teenager who defies the basic survival instinct, running away from a hail of bullets. oh, no. instead this young man who used to work in a bakery decides to crawl into the gunfire to try to save a stranger's life. this is a reality for so many syrians every single day. here's cnn, but if there children in the room, get them out now. >> a fighter slithers across the street. his body hugging the cold pavement. yards away a woman lies motionless. she has been shot by a sniper. her rescuer is not a relative nor a neighbor. he never met her. he is just 17. he knew he had to save the woman or die trying. when we met him later, he
faulkner. with just days to go until the fiscal cliff deadline president obama and top congressional leaders are set for a crucial meeting. expectations are low for a deal when house and senate leaders head to the white house this afternoon to meet there with president obama. lawmakers are increasingly looking at the period following the december 31st deadline we're told to come up with a fix to avoid massive tax hikes and spending cuts, affect lives of nearly every american many economists say could plunge the economy into another recession. chief white house correspondent ed henry live with the latest. so in this meeting, ed, is there any hope they will accomplish anything? >> reporter: well it is pretty low expectations, jon. what we're expecting when you talk to top officials of both parties the president will offer a scaled back plan, something he laid out lines friday before christmas here in the white house briefing room before he went to hawaii. where he said look, we have to scale back expectations. basically just extend middle class tax cuts. don't worry about the rates for
of the other stories we're watching this morning. senator john kerry is in line for a new job. president obama officially nominated kerry to be the next secretary of state. he's currently the chairman of the senate foreign relations committee. secretary of state hillary clinton has said she wanted to leave the job after president obama's first term. >>> three people have been arrested in connection with a deadly house explosion in indianapolis. blast in early november killed two people. police arrested the victim's neighbors who lived in the blown up home and one other person there charged with murder and arson. >>> the lack of a fiscal cliff deal led the stock market to take a big hit on friday. you see it there, the dow was down nearly 121 points for the day. but in the end, all three key indices actually ended up slightly for the week. >>> now, there are just ten days left to salvage a deal on the fiscal cliff where you, i, and everyone else will be paying much higher taxes. president obama is challenging congress to get it done. >> in ten days we face a deadline. in ten days under current
, they're not there. lawmakers have gone home for the holiday recess. and president obama and the first family arrived in hawaii just a short time ago. the president and lawmakers are expected to return thursday after the christmas break. before leaving washington, mr. obama and house speaker john boehner both expressed hope that a deal will actually get done. >> we can't cut our way to prosperity. we need real economic growth. many of us believe on both sides of the aisle that the fundamental reform of our tax code will help us get our economy moving faster and put more americans back to work. and more americans on -- how we get there, god only knows. >> i asked for a compromise from members of congress, i met them more than halfway on spending and met them halfway on taxes. in terms of actual dollar amounts, we're not that far apart. as of today, i am still ready and willing to get a comprehensive package done. >> but time is running out. to reach an agreement, there are now just ten days left until automatic tax hikes and spending cuts do take effect. the s&p 500 and the nasdaq finis
. >> and president obama and congressional republicans are making plenty of sound bytes about it all. but very little progress. abc's tahman bradley has the details from washington. >> reporter: democrats and republicans remain light years apart. here's president obama, in an interview with bloomberg tv, describing house speaker john boehner's plan to avoid the fiscal cliff. >> unfortunately the speaker's proposal right now is still out of balance. >> reporter: the speaker's plan would raise $800 billion in tax revenue. but does so without raising tax rates for top income earners. the president says that's unacceptable. >> we're going to have to see the rates on the top 2% go up. and we're not going to be able to get a deal without it. >> reporter: republicans, like rising star senator marco rubio, say raising taxes on the wealthy is the wrong approach. >> the tax increases he wants would fail to make even a small dent in the debt. it would hurt middle-class businesses and the people who work for them. >> reporter: so, that's the major holdup, taxes. republicans and democrats deeply divided. >> there
obama said the law was politically driven. susan mcginnis is in washington with details. good morning to you. >> reporter: good morning. yeah, the governor now says he wants the economic boost that the law would bring, the jobs and the companies that would locate there, but many disagree. workers say it's going to push down their pay and benefits and weaken unions. police stand shoulder to shoulder preparing for as many as 10,000 protesters at the michigan state capitol today. >> people have a constitutional right to demonstrate. however, all we ask is that they do it in an orderly, lawful, and civil manner. >> reporter: state legislators vote this morning on a right-to-work bill that would weaken unions. opponents acknowledge they're powerless to stop it. >> at the end of the day they'll be passed and signed by the governor. that doesn't make it right. >> reporter: the bill means michigan workers would no longer have to pay the union fees for negotiating contracts and other services. >> if i'm being provided a service by a particular organization, i don't care if that's a club due or
with president obama on one point. concern about violence in popular culture. video games, movies and news music. the nra is one of the most feared and effective lobby groups in the nation. now signs of shifting public opinion and renewed calls for gun restrictions in congress and state legislatures present the organization with its biggest test yet. >> thanks so much, pete. >>> more now on the gun debate in and the fiscal cliff. joining me is congresswoman diana of colorado. welcome to you, glad to have you join us. >> good morning, alex. >> the nra says the answer to gun attacks is putting police with guns in the schools. you are from colorado and you knee did not work in the columbine attack because there were armed guards will, right? >> right. alex, columbine is in my congressional district and i was in congress when columbine happened. they had would armed guards there. many of the schools already have armed guards. you know, just saying we need to make bigger fortresses of our elementary schools is really an unbelievable and shocking answer to the issue of these assault weapons and these
. >> good morning gretchen. president obama's trip came after the innocent students and teachers were killed and one day before the tight-knit community must bury 20 child sized coffins. >> i am mindful that mere words can't match the depths of your sorrow, nor can they heal your wounded hearts. i can only hope that it helps you to know that you are not alone in your grief and that our world, too, has been torn apart. >> president obama met private low in classrooms with families of the 26 innocent people who lost their lives on friday. the principal's daughter tweeted a photo. my mom would be so proud to see president obama to hold her grand daughter. but not as proud as i am of her. emily parker's family showed somber moments of the demander in chief and other miles. we have confirmed that adam lanza visited one gun range and fired hundreds of shots . president obama will use power to make sure this never happens again. >> we say we are truly doing enough to give all of the children of this country the chance they deserve to live out their lives with happiness and purpose. i've been reflec
involved at least one major concession from president obama. to cut social security benefits. the cuts wouldn't have been direct. they would have come from a tweak to the way the social security benefits are calculated. here's how it works. right now the amount of money a retireee gets from the government gets is changed due to the index. when inflakes goes up, social security recipients see their payments go up the same amount to keep up with the cost of living. obama proposes switching to "chained cpi. "the name is opaque but the name is simple. the chained cpi rises more slow lie than regular cpi. if you yoois chain cpi to calculate social security benefits the amounts of the social security checks will rise more slowly, as well, against inflation. for about two days, this major concession opposed by many progressive lawmakers seemed close to becoming law until jeanne boehner walked away from the deal and tried to yankee laterally pass his own bill which he called, somewhat weirdly, plan b, to raise taxes on over 100 million and suspend all leeming cuts. that plan blew up in boehner
in the negotiations with president obama and it comes only 12 days before automatic tax hikes and spending cuts go into effect. that could take a painful toll on the u.s. economy. let's go to capitol hill. our senior congressional correspondent dana bash is standing by with the latest. dana? >> reporter: well, wolf, the vote that the speaker calls plan b is about an hour away. we're told that republican leaders at this hour are still twisting arms, republican arms to make sure that this passes. there's a weird sense here, a weird atmosphere that things are moving fast but stalled at the same time. the fiscal cliff impasse is so surreal, democrats are resorting to movie analogies, calling republicans thelma and louise. >> rather than face the reality of what lies ahead, they hit the gas. that's what we're hearing from speaker boehner now. >> reporter: don't blame us, say the republicans, it's the president. >> he's doing everything within his power to take us over the cliff and he is set on dividing us. >> reporter: adding to the sense that congress is in an alternate universe, instead of negotiati
, president obama responded to boehner's remark. >> i'm willing to make more entitlement spending cuts on top of the one trillion dollars in spending cuts i signed into law last year. but if we're serious about reducing our deficit while still investing in things like education and research that are important to growing our economy, and if we're serious about protecting middle class families, then we're also going to have to ask the wealthiest americans to pay higher tax rates. that's one principle i won't compromise on. >>> holiday hiring may have given a big boost to the jobs report released yesterday. retail hirers hired more people than any month on record since 1939. 146,000 jobs were added to the economy last month, and the unemployment rate fell to a four-year low of 7.7% partly because thousands have just simply stopped looking for work. >>> more good news for your wallet. gas prices are down to an average of $3.36. it is the 16th consecutive time the price has dropped. the highest price for a gallon of regular is in high where it's $4.02. >>> he served his party as a republican, and
. >>> aloha means good-bye. president obama cuts his hawaiian vacation short to deal with the fiscal cliff. it is already too late? good morning, 7:00 in the east. i'm alina cho. >> and i'm drew griffin. soledad o'brien is off today. "starting point" begins right now. >>> our starting point, a cruel one. a one-two christmas punch from mother nature. tornadoes and blizzards tearing through the south and midwest. >> oh, my god. we need to go. it's right there. >> mobile, alabama, took a real beating. a twister blowing up transformers, leaving more than 25,000 customers without power. reports to damage to homes, a high school, and church. >> it came in behind the church right there, and then all green fluorescent lighting and popping transformers left and right. and we heard the crashing and everything and the power went out. >> i prayed to god as loud as i could, and i was just praying for my safety, and i knew the church was shaking. i just prayed that the church stayed put. >> here is the other half of this story, blizzard conditions blanketing much of the midwest and the northeast will ge
' income over $250,000 was a cornerstone of president obama's re-election campaign. but he's reportedly backing off those demands. in his latest offer to republicans, the president is seeking to raise rates on incomes over $400,000 for couples. his offer also includes a reduction in future cost of living increases for social security recipients. and he's dropping his proposal to extend the payroll tax cut. if that happens paycheck contributions would go from 4.2% to 6.2%, raising $115 billion a year to go to deficit reduction. but the president is holding firm on keeping the eligibility age of medicare at 65. republicans have proposed raising the age to 67. house speaker john boehner didn't speak to reporters as he left the white house monday. last week boehner broke the logjam when he agreed to raise some income tax rates. and while this is the most progress we've seen, there's still a long way to go. speaker boehner's spokesperson says the president's plan does not include enough spending cuts, but he is hopeful talks will continue. terrell, not over yet. >> we'll hopefully get someth
, a pretty clean case here and even the obama administration has already said it doesn't think the constitutionality of the defensive marriage act can withstand a legal attack. the second case the court decided to take on is proposition 8, the california ballot initiative adding a state constitutional amendment in 2008 that said only marriage between a man or woman is valid or recognized in california. it overturned a court ruling that said same-sex couples have a right to marry. the cases are likely to be heard in march and decided some time in june. randi? >> joe johns, thank you very much. >>> so, the decisions handed down next year but as jeffrey toobin told anderson cooper just the fact that they'll hear the cases is a landmark move. >> in 1967 was also the decision that said interracial marriage could not be banned by states. today that looks like, can you imagine a state that would ban interracial marriage. but 19 states still had that law in 1967. this gay right supporters have said this is the loving versus virginia of gay rights. we'll see. i don't know what the outco
attending a memorial service this weekend, president obama today enjoyed round of golf. the r&r in hawaii is not likely to last. with aides saying the president is expected to fly back to washington as early as wednesday. with hopes of a last-minute budget deal fading fast. >> it's the first time that i feel it's more likely that we will go over the cliff than not. if we allow that to happen, it will be, the most colossal consequencial act of congressional irresponsibility. >> republicans continue to insist the president wants to go off the cliff for political purposes. >> i think he sees a political victory at the bottom of the cliff. he gets the additional tax revenue for new programs and he gets to cut the mill their, that democrats have been calling for and he gets to blame republicans for it. >> top allies note he has tried to get a deal for weeks and says the real problem that republicans won't admit that obama won the election. >> on taxes, i know it's hard for republicans but the president ran on the platform. 250. no tax increase for people below but taxes for people above. he wo
the storm. >>> and back to work in washington with five days to go. president obama comes back to washington to try to hammer out a deal with the senate, and we're hearing it may come down to the final minute of the year. >>> sticky gas pedals costing toyota $1 billion. the company's plan to put sudden acceleration allegations in their past and how you may we able to cash in on it even if you already sold your car. >>> a packed show ahead. congressman steven latourette of ohio, senator richard blumenthal of connecticut, plus the grinch. it's thursday, december 27th. "starting point" begins right now. >>> well, our starting point, a brutal winter storm battering the northeast and torturing holiday travelers all over the country. here it is on the radar. the system is expected to dump up to two feet of snow on central maine today. six states are under winter storm warnings, pennsylvania, new york, massachusetts, new hampshire, vermont, and of course maine. everyone there could see at least a foot of snow. more than 200,000 customers spanning several states are already without power. more than
and the january deadline now just ten days away. president obama and his family are vacationing in hawaii and congress is on holiday recess after no new breakthrough and both sides are holding out and they'll be able to reach a deal. >> call me a hopeless optimist, but i actually still think we can get it done. >> of course, hope springs eternal and i know we have it in us to come together and to do the right thing. >> nbc's kristin welker is in hawaii and the president is still in talks while he's there or are the the talks on hiatus? >> richard, my sources tell me this is very much a working vacation for president obama and at this time there's no conversation between the president and congressional leaders and that doesn't mean that they're not going to happen. back in washington, d.c., staffers at the white house and on the hill are still there to some extent, communicating with each other and talking with each other, trying to get a deal going. it seemed earlier this week, richard, as though president obama and john boehner were getting close to some sort of a deal, a deal that would
. >>> president obama's response to the newtown shooting this afternoon was itself remarkable. that is coming up. plus, we've got some news beyond this story to share with you. please stay with us. he news starts with arthritis pain and a choice. take tylenol or take aleve, the #1 recommended pain reliever by orthopedic doctors. just two aleve can keep pain away all day. back to the news. hi, i'm ensure clear... clear, huh? i'm not juice or fancy water. i've got nine grams of protein. that's three times more than me! [ female announcer ] ensure clear. nine grams protein. zero fat. in blueberry/pomegranate and peach. >>> the massacre in newtown, connecticut is unfolding in a way that may seem familiar. the first calls to 911, emergency members arrive, frantic family members converge on the scene. government officials are called to account. for president obama, another instance of horrific violence requires a response, not only to the many individual tragedies of today, not only to the people of the community rocked by loss, but to the nation and to the question of what we can do as a nation to ke
barack obama. >> the school's staff did not flinch. they responded as we all hope we might respond. wait for the good guys, they're coming. and we know that good guys came. can we honestly say that we're doing enough to keep our children safe from harm? we can't tolerate this anymore. surely we can do better than this. ♪ sleep in heavenly peace ♪ sleep in heavenly peace >> beautiful sound there from "saturday night live." let's get to our panel. karen finney is an msnbc political analyst, ana marie cox is a columnist for the guardian and steve kornacki is my colleague. steve, we checked the website of one online gun supplier for the sort of rifle that was used by the individual on friday. i think we have video of it, and they're almost completely sold out. now, a new abc/"washington post" polls believe newtown is indicative of broader problems in american society. so do you think this time things are different? the circumstances, the context, this time for a conversation about gun control is different? >> it is. and the pressure i think is going to be more intense in the days, weeks,
will plunge the economy back into recession. president obama flies back from hawaii tonight to be ready if the senate comes back with a plan when it returns to work tomorrow. and house leaders are huddling with members on stand-by to return. senior congressional correspondent dana bash is following all of it for us. what are you hearing? >> there was a conference call of course members of the house leadership even, they're back in their districts, but there was a conference call today among those house republican leaders trying to figure out if and when the house should come back into session. two republican sources tell me they did not make a decision on this call. it's still up in the air. and a big reason for that is if anything can get done in the next six days, the ball is in the senate's court. the capitol is a ghost town. neither chamber in session. an eerie calm since the fiscal cliff only congress has the power to avert is less than one week away. from their home, senate democratic leaders is trying to figure out if the president's scaled back bill can pass congress at the 11th
a deal or work something out. president obama says he is modestly optimistic that negotiations could prevent these huge tax hikes and spending cuts from kicking in. >> we don't yet see an agreement, and now the pressure is on congress to produce. if they don't, what i've said is that in the senate we should go ahead and introduce legislation that would make sure middle class taxes stay where they are, and there should be an up or down vote. everybody should have a right to vote on that. if republicans don't like it, they can vote no. >> brianna keilar, she's at the white house. brianna, they're saying they're going to come back to work in a couple of hours. a lot of people have been up a lot longer than that, up earlier, trying to figure out what's going on here. i understand you do have some news. potentially there's a new offer on the table. >> reporter: that's right. according to democratic sources, suzanne, they have gone up to $450,000 as the threshold for those income tax rates for where those bush-era tax cuts would expire. so beyond $450,000 for a family. this is somewhat sig
. history is important. >> i'm don lemon at >>> look who's talking. president obama and house speaker john boehner get together a little more than three weeks before we hit the fiscal cliff. >> gone too soon. a mexican-american singing superstar killed as a small plane plunges into a mountain range. >> just devastated for them. i'm really feeling for them. >> raw and emotional. two radio hosts talk about the family of the nurse who took her own life after getting duped by their prank call. >>> good morning, to you. welcome to "early start." welcome back, mr. berman. >> it is great to be here. i was on vacation for a week. now i'm back. i'm john berman. it is 5:00 a.m. in the east. i am feeling that. but this, they are talking for the first time in over three weeks. president obama and house speaker john boehner looked each other in the eye and actually had a conversation. now that's a really big deal when it comes to the fiscal cliff crisis. because in just 22 days americans face severe tax hikes and spending cuts unless these two leaders can find a way to compromise. now neither side woul
thou,000 a year. the bush tax cut will expire at the end of this year. obama was elected with a surplus of about three million votes. he won the election. he campaigned on this issue. again, the speaker can't take yes for an answer. the president has presented to him something that would prevent us from going over the cliff. it was response to something that the speaker gave them himself but i guess with the dysfunctional republican caucus in the house, even the speaker can't tell what they are going to do because he backed off even his own proposal. the house, we hear so often, is controlled by the republicans. and we acknowledge that. i would be most happy to move forward on something that senator mcconnell said they wouldn't filibuster over here that he would support and that boehner would support if it were reasonable. but right now we haven't heard anything. i don't know and it's none of my business, i guess, although i am very curious, if the speaker and the majority leader, the republican leader over here are even talking. i mean, what's going on here? mr. president, you can't le
>>> and before i let you go, "time" magazine revealed its person of the year. it is barack obama for a second time here. the magazine calls him both the symbol and architect of this new america. that was a quote. also on the list was mala malala yousufzal, the teenager, the pakistani girl who was shot in the head by the taliban. number three, the successor to apple's steve jobs, tim cook. i'm brooke baldwin in the cnn headquarters in atlanta. in the meantime, we go to wolf blitzer. >>. hey, wolf. >> brooke, thank you very much. president obama challenging washington to do something about gun control. >> summon even one tiny iota of the courage that the teachers, the principal in newtown showed on friday. >>> finally, some real answers about the benghazi attack that killed four americans. we now know more than reason for the grossly inadequate security. i'm wolf blitzer. you're in "the situation room." we begin with president obama's call to action against what he calls the national epidemic of gun violence amid the trauma over the newtown school massacre, he has put vice presiden
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